Ross, Other/Just Looking in New Jersey

What is the standard commission paid to a real estate agent to sell your home in Bergen County NJ?

Asked by Ross, New Jersey Wed Jan 9, 2008

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I am not a real estate professional but recently sold my house. Most will tell you 6% and give you the standard speech about how they deserve 6% and you shouldn't settle for less. Are some of them worth it? Maybe. So here is what I did:

I negotiated with my agent that if they got my asking price or above I would pay them the full commission, if it was below then they had to knock 1% off. I set the asking price toward the high end of my estimate so they would have to work a little of their magic to get the price, but we both agreed it wasn't impossible and they accepted the terms. They could have turned it down.

But bottom line is, it is completely negotiable and don't settle for 6%. As long as you are fair most agents are willing to deal. In the end I sold my house for $2000 less then the asking price, I was happy.

Now I am looking for a house and what really annoys me is that many of the listing you see online have 1 or 2 line descriptions or none at all and the pictures are horrible (out of focus, weird angles, or bad quality). I also find errors like the house has a garage (in the picture) for example but when you search for houses with a garage the house doesn't show up because someone didn't take the time to enter all the information and check all the boxes properly. I see mistakes like this a lot and these people are making thousands of dollars when a home sells!

So interview several people, don't pick the first one and look at some of their listings online first to see how well they market their current customers.

Good luck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 19, 2008
There is no such thing as a standard commission.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 12, 2008
Don Tepper, Real Estate Pro in Burke, VA
MVP'08
Contact
Commissions are fully negotiable... there are no standards fees.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 11, 2008
Alan May, Real Estate Pro in Evanston, IL
MVP'08
Contact
What about selling for 10% commission? Is that realistic to expect a broker or agent to ever ask for that amount for advertising a 21,000 dollar condo?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Nov 10, 2012
6%, IT IS NOT THE COMMISSION AS MUCH AS IT IS THE SERVICE I PROVIDE MY CLIENTS. IT IS NOT ABOUT SELLING YOUR HOME, ITS THE MARKETING, THE OPEN HOUSES, THE FOLLOW UP, THE OFFERS AND NEGOTIATION. YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR AND I OFFER AND RECEIVE MANY REFERRALS BECUASE I DONT JUST SELL A HOME, I BRING THE MOST VALUABLE BUYER, AND PROTECT MY CLIENTS ASSETS AS IF THEY WERE MY OWN. AT THE END OF THE DAY APPLES TO APPLES, THE SERVICE YOU COMMAND IS THE SERVICE I WILL PROVIDE.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 30, 2009
In the state of NJ all realtor commission fees are negotiable. Now like the old saying goes "you get what you pay for "and that hold true (example Foxtons could never get an appt to show a home) If you are looking for a full service brokerage to market your home, offer sound real advice and provide the tools needed to sell, then 5-6% is fair.
Web Reference: http://www.OurNJhouse.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 3, 2009
Hi...I am a Realtor for over 20 years and have credentials that I won't bore you with. If you interviewed 2, 3 or 4 Realtors it is possible you will get quoted 4 different commissions because there is no set fee in the industry. It is up to the individual Broker to determine what he asks for and feels his or her services are worth. Some companies are more negotiable than others and it has nothing to do with services. The agent from Weichert gave you an answer that was taught to him by his company...I know I use to work for them. Many agents when they start out need to have dialogue when dealing with the commission questions asked by the seller and most larger companies train you to give pat answers...many a listing has been lost that way. When I went out on my own 8 years ago I became much more negotiable because I could afford to be. My overhead is lower than any large company and I give that savings to my sellers never compromising services or professionalism. The level playing field is the MLS and internet. There is nothing a larger company can offer you that a smaller Broker who is technologically savy can. I can go on forever so if you have any more questions about commission or sevices give me a call.
Niki
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Jan 21, 2008
Clarification...

Ross,

In my post, where I indicate that an agent may quote you a range, I am referring to an individual agent's pricing range, not an industry standard. Some Realtors work within price and fee ranges, and other Realtors may have set fees, and that set fee for that Realtor or brokerage is perfectly legal.

I have heard consumers state, "but I was told that commissions are negotiable" when quoted a set fee by an agent, so that statement can cause confusion. A business may set a fee schedule for itself. Businesses may not price fix within an industry. Anti trust laws are not exclusive to the real estate industry.

A brokerage (company) or individual agent may establish their own fee schedule which might be firm. Many agents will negotiate the commission and fees based upon the property and the individual seller. In my post below, all reference to "ranges" refer to a discussion with an individual agent about their fee ranges, and not the industry.

If you were to phone a handful of agents and discuss the fees that each individually charged and services provided, you would have an idea of your options.

Deborah
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 12, 2008
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Brick, NJ
MVP'08
Contact
Hi Ross,

It will be challenging for RE Pros to answer this question on this forum. Anti-trust laws prohbit price fixing (in any service, trade or biz) and discussion on this forum might be construed as a violation of anti-trust. For legal compliance reasons, most Realtors will shy away from engaging in fee discussion on this fourm. Individually, many will be happy to discuss this with you by phone or direct email correspondence.

You will be able to find real estate agents who will represent you for as little as a few hundred dollars to fees in the 5 figure range, or more. There is usually a relationship between the amount of fees paid and the representation and marketing provided.

On the lower end of the fee scale is flat fee to the seller for minimal seller representation. In addition to the fee paid for seller representation, you will have commisison or compensation due to a buyers agent if you choose this route.

On the other end of the scale is full serive that would include a comprehensive marketing plan.

While most agents will probably provide an answer that it depends upon your property and your needs, you can ask them to provide you a range. It is true that if often depends upon the individual seller and the specific property.

Example: If I am going to do a video on your home, build a single property site, and place/promote this via several print ads, the fee structure that I quote may be much higher than if the marketing plan for your home does not include this. Every real estate agent sets their own fee structure under the guidelines of their brokerage firm.

When making your inquiries via phone, it may be helpful to loosely define the type of service and representation you seek. If one were to ask, "How much does a car cost?", one might get an answer that indicates a pre-owned economy car might cost a few thousand, and an exquisite luxury vehicle could run in the 6 figure range. In contrast, the question "What is the price range for a brand new 2008 luxury 4-door sedan loaded with bells and whistles?" would generate more specific data in response.

Good luck in the sale of your property.

Deborah
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Jan 12, 2008
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Brick, NJ
MVP'08
Contact
Dear Ross:

Call me I would be happy to sit down with you and show you what Weichert Realtors will do to market, sell and close the home. 201-926-0573 is my cell and my name is Karen Zamani, Weichert Realtors, Fairlawn, NJ
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 11, 2008
6% if you want a qualified realtor that will market, host open houses and do a brokers open to get the market out there and poken about. So many client focus of the 1% less they might get but neglect to realize that 1 or 2 % is equally the less of a service you will get from a brand x agent. I have been at Weichert Realtors and we provide alot of inhouse services, ie prequalifing clients etc to bring the most qualified person to the closing. In addition, ask your self this? If an agent will take a 4 or 5% listing, what will he do with your offers negotiate harder or less, I get my clients the value there home is worth and nothing less even in a buyers market. Dont sell yourself short to gain 1-2% when you could be loosing alot more by accepting a much lower offer, that what good agents are hired to do, represent, be loyal, work to market, sell, host opens and invite everyone in to gain the buyer.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Jan 11, 2008
Wow! I could not disagree with you more. Realtors work for themselves and no one else. They make a commission by charging as much as possible in fees and talking the seller down as much as possible so that she can sell the building quickly with as little work as necessary. My last realtor talked me down $150,000 before listing. She DEMANDED 7% and said that my home would probably not sell for a year or two. It sold in 48 hours. I took all the marketing photos and put together the brochure. She simply put it on the MLS which is a cartel. I figured she made about $12,000 an hour for her time. Never again. I have since sold two properties using Zillow.
Flag Tue Feb 4, 2014
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